Sophia Tesch was one of the millions of disenfranchised voters in America. Although she knew about current events she didn’t know what to do about them. That all changed with a knock at the door in 2007 when a community organizer stopped by to ask her opinion about issues going on in the neighborhood. This enlightening encounter made a great impact and over the next three years Sophia became very involved in the community and in civic engagement.
Later in 2007 Sophia found herself in Washington DC to lobby the Federal Government. Discussing many important exciting issues. Being able to participate creates a feeling that she was finally able to do something that could make a positive impact on the world. While she was there she learned about power and money and its influence on Washington DC and about effective lobbying techniques.
During her time in DC Sophia attended a speech given by the late Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA) which inspired her to learn more and do more when she went back home to Arizona.
Sophia expanded her community volunteer work to include graduating from the Mesa Leadership Training and Development (MLTD) program in 2008 and serving on the MLTD board from 2009-2011. MLTD is part of the Mesa Chamber of Commerce Business in Education Foundation. She created and hosted an International Peace Day discussion in 2008 discussing Peace and Sustainability options in her community. In addition to several smaller volunteer efforts, she assisted in a political campaign in 2008 and has absorbed insider information one can only obtain from hands-on experience.
Sophia learned much from being part of local campaigns and citizen advocacy projects and was elected to be Chair of the City of Mesa Human Services Advisory Board two of the three years she served on the board. The Human Services Advisory Board advises Mesa City Council on the appropriation of funding for programs assisting Mesa residents in need Sophia learned the difference between what she calls “bumper sticker slogan” shouting and actual reality-based decision and policy making. During her time on the board donations to the local charity A Better Community Fund went up by 60%.
Sophia is greatly inspired to share all she has learned with her fellow Civil Citizens. Citizens who want to create civil discourse and dialog about the important issues of the day. The more people who are involved in the political system, the better the system can be. If she can do it, anyone can do it, once they know how. The Civil Citizen is here to teach those steps and start that Civil dialog to change.
She continues her work as a freelance writer, local activist, and advocate for the rights of working, middle-class, families and small business in Mesa, Arizona where she lives with her husband and children.